Dynamic seismic displays

Steven Lynch, Laurence R. Lines

Existing seismic displays, wiggle trace, variable density and terrain (SeisScape) displays are all limited because they are static. They provide a single view of a single seismic record or section. In fact, seismic processing is in general a static process because we apply a process and then view the result. We can view the data before the process or after the process, but using the traditional seismic display techniques we have no way to see anything in between.

In this paper we introduce a new type of seismic display, the dynamic display. A dynamic display is one which uses the programmability of modern graphics cards to perform limited seismic processing in real time. Dynamic displays can also produce a continuous sequence of displays. These displays can be configured to either gradually apply a seismic process or to gradually show how the process affects the data.

The advent of the graphic processing unit (GPU) has made it possible for us to pass multiple streams (versions) of seismic data to the graphics board. We can then use the GPU's programmable vertex processor to combine and manipulate the various streams.

Dynamic displays have the ability to fundamentally change the way that we interact with seismic data and with large and complex data sets in general.